As the world marks the 2018 World Oral Health Day, Dr Seye Logede, Vice-Chairman, Dental Association of Nigeria, Abuja Chapter, says the general attitude of Nigerians to oral health has significantly improved unlike in times past.
Logede who is a Principal Dental Officer in the Oral Diagnosis Unit of the National Hospital, Abuja, told our correspondent on Tuesday in Abuja that the use of social media contributed to the success recorded.
He said that poor dental health could affect a person’s general health and well-being as the mouth is the gateway to the body.
According to him, contrary to what people think, there is nothing happening in the body that does not have symptoms or indications in the mouth.
The dentist explained that poor oral hygiene could also affect the psychological well-being of a person and make one lose self-confidence.
“Your total psychological well-being is affected when you have bad oral hygiene; you would not be able to speak or smile in public and people will find it unpleasant talking with you.’’
He also said that a person with poor oral health would find eating food and taking cold or hot drinks unpleasant.
“When your teeth and gum are in poor condition, you can no longer enjoy your food; if you take cold or hot drinks, your teeth will scream aloud.”
Logede advised that every human being should see a dentist every six months at most while for, children as soon as they start to have teeth.
He, however, said children born with any congenital malformation affecting the mouth should see the dentist from birth.
On the theme of the celebration which is “Say Ahh: Think Mouth, Think Health”, he said, “To be candid, the attitude of Nigerians to oral health is improving unlike a few years ago that people did not bother with their oral health.
“If you are anaemic or have some underlying health conditions, there is a way it shows in the mouth.’’
The dentist, therefore, advised members of the public to also brush twice a day, first thing in the morning and last thing at night.
He also said that people should try to avoid eating between meals.
“People should try to reduce their snacking habit, take a lot of fluids and see their dentists every six months.”
The World Dental Foundation launched the World Oral Health Day in 2002 and it is being celebrated on March 20 yearly.
The celebration is aimed at creating awareness on the prevention and control of oral disease.